Rainbow Carrot Salad

pickled & sweet

It’s finally here! GoogaMooga weekend! For those of you who are either not obsessed with food-centric events or don’t live in New York, GoogaMooga is a giant food and music festival in Brooklyn’s Prospect Park. Kramer and I went last year and had an amazing time. A lot of people said that they had a terrible time – there were crowds, food ran out, it was hard to get beer and wine, etc. but to those people I say, duh! It was a free festival in Brooklyn. Over 1,500 people were there each day. Of course there were lines! Of course there was no cell phone reception! Kramer and I, being the nerds that we are, got there right when the gates opened, got out beer tickets, ate the food we wanted, then just hung out on the lawn and relaxed in the sunshine. I had a duck confit hot dog with black garlic, my first taste of Mile End Deli’s smoked meat sandwich (which consequently started my love affair with the restaurant), and more. I was in total heaven. This year, I’m looking forward to Toro’s (all the way from Boston) braised rabbit and snail paella and I’m definitely getting something sweet from Big Gay Ice Cream. Anyone else headed over that way this weekend? Kramer and I will be there on Saturday and I’m just counting the minutes!

Rainbow Carrot Salad

Kramer and I walked all around last weekend in search of Steve Burns’ awesome house – we just needed to see its beauty in real life.
As far as what’s going on this week, well, not too much, which is good. I’ve actually recently started a feeble attempt at running. I ran two miles on three days this week. I don’t know if it’s necessarily getting easier yet, but I do love being outside in the nice weather and exploring my neighborhood more than I have in the past couple of years. I’m obviously very slow, but it’s all about just working on it and not giving up, right? Right now, the first mile is great. I feel excellent and think to myself, “I could do this all day!” Then, around mile one and a half, I fall right off. At this point, I’m thinking to myself, “Oh sweet lord, just keep moving your feet.” One foot goes in front of the other until finally I’m home and I collapse on the cold stone floor of my apartment’s kitchen. Maybe sometime soon I’ll be able to do three miles, but for now, I’m just going to work on not feeling like I am going to die after two. My whole family runs or used to run, but I never really got into that. I rowed crew in high school, and we did have to run during training, but I was also 16 or 17 at the time, where nothing can stop you and physical activity is no big deal. Now, I sit on my ass all day in front of a computer, so running is a serious challenge. Hopefully I can keep it up this summer and maybe I’ll even go from pasty white skin to slightly beige skin. A girl can dream!

Rainbow Carrot Salad

As we head into the summer months, things are going to get real, people. Cooking is not fun in the summer, especially if you live in a place like New York where air conditioning barely works, if you’re lucky enough to have a unit at all, and everyone is packed into close, sweaty quarters. Kramer and I eat a lot of raw vegetables and fish when it’s hot outside, as I can’t be bothered to even turn on the stove for a few minutes to boil water. I was wandering around the farmer’s market one day before work and happened upon these beautiful rainbow colored carrots. I had to get them and do something to showcase their different levels of sweetness, along with their refreshing crunch. As it happened, the day I made this salad was warmer than usual (we’ve been having a lot of strangely warm days followed by chilly, breezy days lately) and I didn’t feel like cooking the carrots, plus I was afraid that their color would fade when put to heat. Therefore, into a red wine vinegar, sugar, and spring garlic mixture they went. Add a little freshly ground black pepper and lemon zest, and you’ve got yourself a lovely summer salad, that’s almost pickled but not quite. I liked to eat this nice and cold out of the refrigerator, but it’s perfect for a room temperature picnic side dish, too. You obviously don’t need different colored carrots for this, but if you can find them, they really do pop and make your plate look alive with purples, oranges, and yellows.

Rainbow Carrot SaladAn old subway sign from back when each line was privately owned, cocktails, coffee, and kimchi fried eggs.

Smashing some garlic a few weeks ago (gif thanks to Jesse Chan Norris).

Rainbow Carrot Salad
I got these beautiful bad boys at Union Square’s Greenmarket.

Rainbow Carrot Salad
Since you are eating this salad raw, I recommend peeling the carrots, slicing thinly, then tossing with your spring garlic or scallions and your vinaigrette.

Rainbow Carrot Salad
Allow to sit in the fridge for an hour or two before serving chilled or room temperature.

Rainbow Carrot Salad

Rainbow Carrot Salad
Prep time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 6 as a side
Sweet, refreshing, and crunchy raw carrot salad with spring garlic for your summer picnics and barbecues.
  • 5-6 carrots, peeled and thinly sliced
  • 4-5 stalks spring garlic or large scallions, thinly sliced
  • 3 tablespoons red wine vinegar
  • 2 teaspoons sugar
  • ¼ teaspoon kosher salt, plus more to taste
  • freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  • zest of ½ a lemon
  1. Thinly slice your carrots and your spring garlic or scallions. Toss them together in a bowl, then in a smaller bowl, whisk together your red wine vinegar, sugar, salt, pepper, and lemon zest. Pour the mixture over the vegetables and toss to combine. Allow to sit in the refrigerator, covered or preferably, in an airtight container, for about an hour. Serve chilled or at room temperature, alone, with a protein, or on top of salad greens. This will keep well, and just start to taste better and better, for up to one week.


17 Responses

  1. I love that this has vinegar and sugar for that sweet pickled taste. I love pickled anything (see Portlandia’s pickling skit). Gotta get my hands on some of these multi-colored carrots; they’re purdy. Hooray on your new running routine! I recently started doing Tracy Anderson’s Metamorphosis workout. It’s totally ridiculous but it makes me dance like a fool for 90 minutes a week at least.

  2. A giant food and music festival?! Jealous! That sounds super awesome!

  3. Oh I feel for you in the summer without air conditioning (Australia is not nice in summer, it can be 25 degrees at 9 am). This pickle is so pretty! I am jealous you are able to get yellow carrots. Could any vinegar do in this recipe? I wish to use rice wine vinegar.

    Love the GIF by the way.

  4. so happy i found your blog before i head to NYC for the first time next week! you’ve provided me with so many exciting places i need to eat at!


  5. I love the colors in this salad! And that food festival sounds so fun – have a blast!

  6. Adam Garsh says:

    Blues Clues! Steve Burns’ Moth talk is great. http://youtu.be/CwmtkFPYXsg

  7. Tieghan says:

    This is such a pretty salad!! Carrots are seriously may favorite ( am eating them right now), so I will love this!!

    That food festival sounds amazing! I am so jealous!! Wish I was there with you!

  8. Rainbow carrots are awesome, as is the fact you didn’t weigh the salad down with oil. Good for you for running. It’s all about getting out there and giving it your all. I find a lot of the time I start out really easily, then struggle about 15-20 minutes in followed by a second wind. Ideally I run at least an hour a day now, but I started at five minutes. No joke. So take it easy and enjoy!

  9. Your garlic smashing motion is perfect!

    And dude, this salad is just gorgeous. Can’t wait to try it for myself. And I totally understand about summer cooking. It gets to be 100+ here in the summer so I try not to use the stove whenever possible!

  10. Amy says:

    This salad looks amazing! Wow! So colorful :) What a great summer dish!

  11. Tori says:

    Sydney, could you recommend me a good knife? :) This looks SO good, but I can’t imagine chopping so many carrots with my knife lol. I hope I can find colorful carrots someday! So interesting.

  12. I am crazy for carrot salads at the moment. I think its all the awesome varieties that are available – and like you said the crazy weather. This sounds awesome.

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  14. elizabeth says:

    These look great–Fairway frequently has maroon carrots in stock and I’ll have to try this out. Lightly-pickled carrots (via the Momofuku cookbook) have helped me develop an appreciation for raw carrots, so hopefully this will fit right in.

  15. Raquel says:

    I ate this tonight to make a vegetarian meal complete. Nice balance of sweet, sour and salty. Love it! Thanks for the simple but delicious recipe :)

  16. […] Rainbow Carrot Salad is a light and tasty side dish, which requires no cooking at […]

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